Howzit Wheel Turners!
Yesterday, Saturday, September 15th was the first event of 6 events in the 2012 – 2013 Hawaii Winter Outlaw Series and I gotta give it a big CHEEHOO! What a start to the season! We had nearly 50 racers out on the beautiful, sunny, North Shore of Oahu ready to race.
We gathered at the beach on the bottom of the mountain to get registered and get brackets set. Once everyone stocked up on water for the day we decided to head up the mountain.
Upon arriving at the top, there was a Hawaii forest police officer just leisurely relaxing in his car at the entrance of the course. So we instantly signaled all arriving skaters to turn around and head back to the beach. This was a nice little wake up call to remind everyone that this IS an outlaw race, and not everything can be perfect. So we took an hour break, and headed back up the hill.
Now he was gone, so we all started our hike into the race course. You walk a dirt road for about 15 minutes then out of no where, Butter,flowing curves appear on the tip of a Hawaiian mountain ridge… to top it off, its closed to cars!
When finally getting to the race course, there was a BIG puddle and some mud across the road. BUT our downhill community grabbed shovels and booms and made it nearly perfect in minutes. So practice runs got underway.
After everyone was looking comfortable on the course, we got underway with the first, prelim round. Several riders were seated in the next round to even out the bracket, so this round determined who would make it into the main event.
Just because this was only the first round, there was no shortage of shreddage. Fast starts ( pushes and throw downs ), tight packs and intense passes were all seen from the very first heat!
After 8 heats of battling it out, the top 2 racers from every round moved on up to the top 32 bracket. With this course being fairly mellow, no drifts, just tuck, go and find the right line… these next few rounds got HEAVY.
Everyone had their game face on, all riders on point, fighting to make it across the finish in 1st or 2nd. As the battle continued on, the top 2 moved up once again… giving us out top 16 racers.
Now the brackets are full of some of Hawaii’s best downhill skateboarders, including Sector 9’s Ethan Lau, last years event winner Nikko Kamanuwai, H.W.O.S x2 overall winner Mackenzie Yoshida to name a few.
Nothing but tight, top notch, Hawaiian racing this round. Every heat staying in one pack, nearly connected from start to finish… going for the winning lines. These heats were getting so close we needed to start sending riders to the finish just to watch CLOSLEY to see who came across that line first.
As the battle moved on, it came down to our top 8, the semi finals. Making it was Nikko vs Maika vs Ethan vs Will and Cookie vs Keola vs Rhys vs Mackenzie. In the first semi final, the racing was tight! So tight that they needed a redo between Maika, Nikko and Ethan just to see who would move on. And in the redo Nikko and Ethan held on strong making the finals for their 2nd year in a row. In the second semi, Rhys kept a good lead in front as the other 3 fought for second… Keola ending up in the number 2 spot!
The finals are Nikko, Ethan, Rhys, Keola and the semis are Cookie, Mackenzie, Will and Maika.
In the consi finals, all racers were in a line dropping into the first dip Maika leading the pack. Mackenzie, cookie and Will closely following, tucking, drafting and bumping their way to the finish.
In the finals, all riders stayed close. Every rider in a perfect tuck, not budging a bit.
As they round the last corner, making it across the finish line first, for the SECOND year in a row was NIKKO Kamanuwai!
Following the finals we all headed down to the beach for the awards. Riders were treated with a load of boards, trucks, gloves, wheels, refreshments and a Hawaiian sun setting into the Pacific Ocean.
All the skaters who came out left with smiles and stoke. It was a full day of wheel turning and positive vibes. That’s what the Hawaii Winter Outlaw Series is all about!
Big Island’s next… who’s ready?!?
2012 – 2013 Hawaii Winter Outlaw Series
Event #1-The 2nd Annual Hawaiian Ridge Rusher
1st Nikko Kamanuwai. $150 & schwag
2nd Ethan Lau $100 & schwag
3rd Keola Chu $75 & schwag
4th Rhys Morishima $50 & schwag
5th Maika McWayne $15 & schwag
6th Will Ross $15 & schwag
7th Mackenzie Yoshida $15 & schwag
8th Tommie “ Cookie” McClain $15 & schwag
Hawaiian Ridge Rusher 2 from Sk808 DH on Vimeo.
Video by Brock Deem
Hawaii Winter Outlaw Series Event #1: The Hawaiian Ridge Rusher II from Evan Higa on Vimeo.
Video by Brock Deem
Caliber Truck Co.
Fly Hi Hawaii
And the rest of those who supported us!
Photos by Evan Higa, Jase Kawasugi, and WheelTurnerHawaii.com